Tame Impala By The Numbers: Breakout Success As Arena Headliner

Tame Impala
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– Tame Impala
performs at San Diego’s Pechanga Arena on March 9, where the band’s tour opener grossed $704,625 on 10,304 tickets.

Tame Impala’s 2020 North American tour following the release of the new album The Slow Rush was just getting underway as the coronavirus immobilized the live industry in mid-March. Like most artists on the road at the time, the band postponed immediate shows and have since rescheduled all of the remaining 2020 dates for next year.

But with a banner year in 2019 including a headlining turn at Coachella and other festivals, a sold-out run at New York’s Madison Square Garden and an overall rise in the average gross per show from $89,000 before last year to $335,000 in 2019, the group seemed poised to be crowned in 2020 as a bona fide arena headliner.

The first two stops on “The Slow Rush” tour would suggest as much. The launch was set for March 9 in San Diego with a single performance at Pechanga Arena. Even though the dire effects of the health crisis would become obvious just a week later, it was all systems go on show day with 10,304 fans showing up for the opener that grossed $704,625. It was a great lead-in to the tour’s second stop the following night in the Los Angeles market for the first of two shows at The Forum in Inglewood. With a total sold ticket count of 25,986 and a $1.8 million gross, the Forum shows established a Boxoffice record for the band with its highest gross and attendance ever for a solo headlining engagement.

The L.A. ticket count was 1,822 more than the final two-show total the previous summer at Madison Square Garden. With a gross topping $1.3 million on Aug. 21-22, 2019, the New York event was the first in North America after a series of festival appearances in Europe that summer. There were solo dates as well including a sellout on June 26, 2019 at Dublin’s 3Arena that grossed $533,000 from 8,618 sold seats.

Prior to 2019, Tame Impala saw Boxoffice success with a series of concerts in 2016 supporting the group’s third studio album Currents, released the previous year. The best-attended event was a single show on Sept. 8 at Palacio de los Deportes in Mexico City attended by a crowd of 20,609, still the band’s highest attendance on record for a single concert. A week earlier they had played a two-show stand in Berkeley, Calif., at the Greek Theatre, grossing $846,000 with about 17,000 fans present over both nights.

In the past decade the venue that has hosted the band the most is Belvoir Amphitheatre located in Perth, Australia, the hometown of Kevin Parker who formed the group in 2007. The first two appearances at the venue came the following year, first as an opening act for MGMT on Dec. 6 and then as opener for the multiple-artist Nevereverland concert on Dec. 21 featuring artists signed at the time to Sydney-based Modular Recordings.

Parker and company returned to the Perth outdoor amphitheater as headliners twice, appearing first on May 18, 2013 selling 67% of the tickets, a total of 3,048. Two and a half years later, though, they moved 93% of the available tickets, selling 8,395 for a two-night stint on Nov. 14-15, 2015. Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion and Sidney Myer Music Bowl in Melbourne each have three events in the archives with Tame Impala on the bill.

Outside of Australia, both Chicago’s Riviera Theatre and Terminal 5 in New York City have hosted the group three times, while numerous venues worldwide have booked the band more than once.